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Premier League Player Ratings: Leicester City 2-1 Swansea

What a difference a sacking makes

Swansea City v Leicester City - Premier League Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

It would be nice to think temporary manager Michael Appleton said or did something in particular to inspire a noticeably better from performance from essentially the same players, in the the same system Craig Shakespeare was using.

The alternative would be that they’d stopped really trying and it took the sacking of their manager to shake them out of it. Considering this is the second time it’s happened this year, that would be quite worrying.

Kasper Schmeichel - 7

Kasper has had a difficult couple of games, only by his sky high standards, but couldn’t be faulted for anything in this one.

Danny Simpson - 6

A typically decent Simpson performance with little to highlight in the way of positives, but no mistakes made either.

Wes Morgan - 7

The Captain was solid as a rock again, winning headers and clearing the ball.

Harry Maguire - 8

Another excellent performance all over the park. Just as comfortable on the ball as he is throwing himself in front of opposition shots.

Christian Fuchs - 7

Another very quietly competent defensive performance and another game where he was regularly involved in the passing game too.

Riyad Mahrez - 8

All year long he’s seemed to be just a fraction of a second away from being his old self, but it just doesn't come off. He’s still not quite there, but more and more of his dribbles, crosses and flicks are starting to come off.

Wilfred Ndidi - 7

Another good all around defensive performance, in the air and on the ground. His passing was much better than it has been for much of the year as well.

Vicente Iborra - 9

Maybe it was Shakespeare, maybe just bad timing, but a light seemed to come on for the Spaniard, who had previously struggled to adapt to our style. I’ve been crying out all season for a midfielder to assert themselves and get on the ball. With nearly 20 touches more than the nearest Fox, Iborra did just that, in a spectacular but controlled display.

Marc Albrighton - 7

Albrighton seems a little off the boil at the moment to me. With that ball at least. Off the ball his tenacity and defensive work just aren't the kind of things that go through bad form.

Shinji Okazaki - 9

Even the most ardent of the anti-Shinji brigade would surely have to look at the last two games and agree that the team is just better off for his presence, and when he’s scoring goals it’s even better.

Shinji did great for us and to be fair when he has played, he’s always done that. What Shinji brings is what he does out of possession. He knows how to deal with a no.6 and the job he did on Leon Britton today was really pleasing - temporary boss Michael Appleton, speaking to, is definitely pro-Shinji.

Jamie Vardy - 7

Much like Shinji, when he’s scoring it’s obvious how much Vardy contributes, and when he doesn't it can get lost. He’s a goal scorer, but a lot more than as well.

Andy King - 7

No matter what’s going on around the club, the two things we can rely on are the presence of Andy King and Shinji coming off between 60 and 70 minutes. Appleton’s first tactical switch deftly tied the two together, bringing an immediate sense of comfort. King, for his part, was surprisingly involved, getting 23 touches in as many minutes of play.

Demarai Gray - n/a

The only change as common as Okazaki off after an hour is Gray coming on too late to make any real impact on the game.

I thought this was a strong performance and one that bodes well for the rest of the season, if it can be be maintained. The breakout performance from Vicente Iborra, which seemed to remind some of Cambiasso, was particularly encouraging and he’s my Man of the Match